Headlines:

Falling birth rates for Japan, predictions for 3011

Academics say that Japan risks becomming extinct in less than a millenium because of its declining birth rates.

Researchers in Sendai say that Japan's population of children (no older than 14 years old), currently stands at 17 million in the country and is rapidly shrinking at an alarming rate of 1 every one hundred seconds.

Projecting the above numbers over a period of one thousand years might mean that Japan could remain childless at the end of this period.

Extrapolating current trends to the year 3011 might sound ridiculous to some but the year 3011 just happens to be the date when the current rate of decline is extrapolated to the value "no children under 15".

  • Written by Julius
  • Category: Asia

Chinese Authorities Censor Internet Following Egypt Unrest

Following the days of political unrest in the strategic Middle East nation, Chinese authorities have deleted and blocked the word 'Egypt' from social-networking and micro-blogging sites, fearing that the Egyptian uprising could encourage similar calls for political reform in the communist China.

Communist Party leaders have expressed their fears by censoring the Internet of anything not reported by state-run Xinhua news agency, which published a limited reportage on the demonstrations in Egypt.

China's state media have excluded in their official reports the Egyptian uprising's reported deaths, the breakdown of communication services and the Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's appointment of prime minister and vice president. Other television stations, newspapers and news websites have refrained from doing independent reporting or commentary, and have instead relied on the official Xinhua reports.

The imposition of strict on-line controls and censorship exhibits the concern of Chinese authorities that the Internet is providing Chinese citizens with new means of information and organization, which could undermine the Communist Party's monopoly power, in the same way it has felled authoritarian governments recently.

Examples of these popular movements include the 'color revolutions' in Russia in 2003-2005 and the pro-democracy demonstrations in Iran in 2009, of which the Chinese authorities have tightened media and restricted the Internet for several months following the uprisings.

Egypt's widespread demonstrations came after protesters have gathered in important cities Cairo and Alexandria to demand the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak, alongside economic and political reforms. With iron fists, Mubarak has ruled the nation for three decades.

The uprising has resulted in the breakdown of peace, order and state authority. Numerous reported deaths, theft, looting have also followed. Protests continued over the last weekend of January as protesters defied curfew and assailed Mubarak's firing of his whole Cabinet and the appointment of a prime minister and vice president.

  • Written by Julius
  • Category: Asia

Shanghai Building Collapses, Nearly Intact

 

This is a 13 story high building lying on the ground. After the building was built, in order to make an Underground Parking they digged a 4.6m high pit on the south side of the building. All the extra soil was left on the north side of the building where it formed a 10m high mountain. This resulted in a high pressure difference of over 3000 tones between the south and the north side. This difference proved to be destructive on the building foundation.

Raining was also a factor that lead to this disaster. The water infiltrated the earth and reached the building's foundation. The building started to move and the hallow foundation pylons broke because of the high pressure difference. The building tilted slowly until it dropped on the ground completely.

 

If other nearby buildings would have been closer this disaster could have been worse. We could have seen a real domino effect. Fortunately this was not the case and a higher disaster was avoided.

 

 

  • Written by Julius
  • Category: Asia

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